Fighting spirit impresses Swedens Ibrahimovic

16 October 2013 11:01

Star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has said he was impressed by Sweden's fighting spirit despite their 5-3 defeat at the hands of Germany ahead of next month's World Cup play-offs.

As Group C runners-up, Sweden are one of eight European teams who will now go into Monday's draw for the two-legged World Cup play-offs, which take place on November 15 and 19.

Ibrahimovic was suspended for Tuesday's final World Cup qualifier in Solna as Sweden shocked the Germans by taking a 2-0 lead before Chelsea winger Andre Schuerrle's hat-trick saw the guests pull away.

But Ibrahimovic will return for the play-offs and the Paris Saint-Germain forward said after the Germany defeat: "I am not worried. In the play-offs we will have two completely different games.

"I liked the way the team fought. If I had been on the pitch, it would have been the same result."

Ibrahimovic singled out striker Tobias Hysen for his two goals against the Germans, including a stunning second-half volley: "He did really well".

Portugal, Croatia, Ukraine and Greece are all possible play-off opponents in pot one with Ibrahimovic's Sweden joining France, Iceland and Romania in pot two.

"Everything is possible," said Sweden coach Erik Hamren.

"There are some good teams in the pot, but we will do all we can to realise our dream of going to the World Cup."

Source: AFP

World Cup Group G

Belgium 1 0 0 3 3
England 1 0 0 1 3
Tunisa 0 0 1 -1 0
Panama 0 0 1 -3 0
Last updated : 08:44